The operators of Linn County’s residential care facility will pay just $1 rental through June 30, county supervisors decided this morning.
Supervisors approved a request from Abbe Inc. to reduce annual rent for the rest of the fiscal year as they deal with changes in state funding.
Abbe, a non-profit, operates Abbe Center for Community Care, 1860 County Home Rd., Marion, under lease from the county. The annual rent, based on the building’s expected maintenance needs for the year, was set at about $220,000 this year.
The population at the center, which serves those with mental illness or disabilities that prevent independent living, was down to 88 last week from 125 a year ago. The county pays the residents’ costs that aren’t covered by the state, Social Security, private insurance, or other sources.
Facing a $5.3 million shortfall for services for mental health and the developmentally disabled (MHDD), the county has tried to move residents from the center to small-group homes. The county is also preparing for expected changes in state funding for MHDD services, including multi-county regional agencies to manage services.
Supervisors will review the county’s lease with Abbe as they prepare a budget for the fiscal year starting July 1. They hope to have a better idea of the county’s options as the Legislature takes up MHDD reform in the session that begins in January.
Supervisor Lu Barron said she hopes to keep the center as an alternative to sending residents elsewhere for residential services.
“I just am really committed to keeping the people of Linn County in Linn County,” said Barron, D-Cedar Rapids. “If we can continue to do that, that’s a good thing.”